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how to write a bibliography for a report

how to write a bibliography for a report

A bibliography is a list of sources on a given report or study. Most of the resources one would need will come from the school library. Based on a working bibliography, a writer may finalize his or her list following the prescribed format for documenting references or sources. The steps in how to write a bibliography for a report is not that complicated but could be tedious when not followed. Whether you are using MLA or APA, the following guidelines in writing a bibliography must be observed:

  1. Arrange the entries in alphabetical order.

  2. Alphabetize names

  3. Consider alphabetizing title of works without authors

  4. Single author entries precede multiple-author entries for entries with the same surname.

  5. Do not use abbreviations

  6. Begin the list of bibliography on a new page.

  7. Put the heading “works cited” for MLA and “References” for APA style in the center top of the page.



    t two spaces between the title and the list of references.

  8. List only sources that have actually used. Do not include sources that have only been consulted.

  9. Use hanging indented style and double space throughout the list.

  10. Set 1.5” margin on the left and 1” on the right, top and bottom.

  11. Include the reference page in the pagination. Pagination should continue from the body of the paper or report to the references.

Specific reference format for bibliography calls for specific formatting style. Know your teacher’s     preferred referencing format. Would it be MLA, APA or Turabian? For the general APA reference style, don’t forget the following:
  1. Write “References”, without the quotation marks, as the title at the center of the page, one double-space down from the running head.

  2. Write the first line flush with the left margin and hang indent subsequent lines by 5-7 spaces. Put two spaces after every period. Double space all entries.

  3. Invert all authors’ names and use initials instead of complete first names.

  4. In parentheses, write the date of publication after the name and a period outside the parentheses. For magazines and newspaper, the day and month of publication, separated by commas, should appear before the year of publication.

  5. Except for periodicals, capitalize only the first letter of the first word of the title and of proper nouns. For periodicals, all major words should be italicized.

  6. Italicize title of books, periodicals, web sites, dissertations, reports and works of art.

  7. The arrangement of information for printed books and articles from books is in this order:

  8. a) the author’s name;  b) the title; c) the place of publication; d) the publisher; e) the date and; f) the medium of publication

  9. For citing specific references, consult an updated APA handbook.

For the general MLA reference style, don’t forget the following:
  1. Entitle the list of references as “Works Cited” without the quotation marks.

  2. Write the first line flush with the left margin and hang indent subsequent lines by 5-7 spaces. Double space all entries.

  3. Italicize the titles for the following items: books, novels, e-books, periodicals, web sites, dissertations, reports, works of art. Do not italicize titles of specific articles found in periodicals or in an anthology or collection.

  4. Use quotation marks for specific articles: poems, essays, short stories, articles in periodicals and chapter titles.

  5. MLA requires the medium of publication in all work cited, usually at the end of the entry which is neither italicized nor in quotation marks: Print, Web, Television, Film, Lecture, CD, DVD, and so on.

  6. The APA arrangement of information for printed books and printed articles from books applies to MLA format

  7. For citing specific references, consult an updated MLA handbook.

And that’s all folks; how to write a bibliography for a report.

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